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ISET Economist Blog

A blog about economics in the South Caucasus financed within the institutional grant by the Government of Sweden.
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The Warning Bells are Ringing: A Difficult Summer Season for the Georgian Electricity Market
Historically, the main concern in monitoring the Georgian electricity market derives from the negative generation-consumption gap arising in the winter season. However, persistent electricity deficits over ten months between August 2018 and August 2019 suggest that the number of months characterized by a negative generation-consumption gap might be on the rise. Looking at Figure 1 below, generation can only clearly be seen to exceed consumption twice during the past 12 months, in May and June.
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An Assessment of the Electricity Market in Light of the “Gavrilov Effect”
The latest impact of Gavrilov’s visit to Georgia has fueled societal concerns about the economic consequences of deterioration in Russo-Georgian relations. For instance, due to the Russian government’s decision to cancel flights to Georgia, residents are beginning to worry about potentially adverse economic impacts on the tourism sector. ISET-PI has already discussed the expected impact of such a change, highlighting how these concerns might be unwarranted, as tourism accounts for 7.6% of the GDP, with Russian tourism contributing only 1.8% to the economy.
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How Can You Be Sure? On the Agricultural Insurance in Georgia
Agricultural production is associated with a variety of risks, including market, institutional, and production risks. An important production factor in agriculture is the weather. Its uncontrollable nature makes weather risk the prevailing risk to agricultural production. Farmers have various informal and formal means of transferring and mitigating these risks. Informal means include savings, diversification, off-farm activities, etc. The most common formal means of risk mitigation is insurance. Insurance is a contract that transfers the risk of financial loss from an individual or business to an insurance company.
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The Dire State of Business Support Organizations in Georgia
In technological terms, there has never been a better time to be a small or medium size business owner: people can always get ahold of you and you can work wherever you need to. Creating an additional source of income catches people’s interests all over the world; as additional motivation, we often hear about the launch of yet another program directly helping these businesses, thus making it easier to become a start-upper. And here, the rhetorical question: “why not?!” pops into some people’s minds.
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A Persistent Negative Generation-Consumption Gap, a Puzzle to Be Explored
Looking at consumption and generation trends, it is evident that since August 2018 consumption typically exceeded generation. The negative generation-consumption gap also remained throughout April, amounting to 45 mln. kWh, with a total power generation of 966 mln. kWh and consumption of 1,012 mln. kWh. Yet why has the generation-consumption gap remained negative since August 2018? Should we also expect the negative gap to persist over the following months?
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Short-Term Swings of the Georgian Lari: A Guessing Game with High Stakes
In the last two weeks, the lari depreciated, once again, against the US dollar. Georgian currency lost about eight tetri against its American counterpart, causing quite a stir in the media, among political groups and economic experts. While government authorities claimed that the recent developments are short-term fluctuations driven by negative expectations, Turkish lira depreciation, dollar’s global strengthening, and are therefore not connected to the fundamentals of the Georgian economy, the members of the opposition were quick to blame incompetent fiscal and monetary policy.
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